Airbus has appointed Mikail Houari, 50, as President for Africa and the Middle East region.
Mikail, who previously served as Deputy President for Africa and the Middle East, brings to the position more than 25 years of experience within the industry at a global level. In his new role, he will lead the team to drive operations and future business across the region.
Houari began his career at Alcatel where he worked in Spain, China and Latin America, after which he joined Thales, focusing initially on business in Saudi Arabia, thereafter leading global sales of its SCADA products and services.
He joined Airbus in 2005 as Vice President for Latin America, overseeing the defence and space divisions from where he moved to the UAE in the same capacity covering the Middle East region.
In 2011, Mikail was appointed as General Delegate for Airbus Group, before taking the position as Deputy President for Airbus in Africa and Middle East.
“Mikail’s extensive business and market experience will allow him to lead Airbus in the region and deliver on its objectives. Under his leadership, Airbus will continue to expand its regional presence as new and existing markets emerge and evolve across Africa and the Middle East,” said Tom Enders, Chief Executive Officer, Airbus.
Mikail Houari is a business graduate in Applied Commercial Sciences from Paris. He succeeds Habib Fekih, who will retire after 30 years of service with Airbus.
Habib Fekih joined Airbus in 1986 as Sales Director for North Africa, before becoming Sales Vice President for the Middle East two years later.
In 2006, Habib established Airbus Middle East and took the helm as President for Africa and the Middle East, a position he has held ever since. He formed long-term partnerships for Airbus with governments, public and private sectors across the region and advised regional airlines on fleet management and operations.
“Habib Fekih is one of Airbus’ longest serving and most successful sales executives. He is one of the architects of Airbus’ new commercial structure. During his 30-year tenure at Airbus, he has successfully piloted the company’s significant growth across one of Airbus’ most dynamic regions,” Tom Enders said.
Under Fekih’s leadership, Airbus sold more than 1,300 aircraft to airlines and leasing companies across the region, raising its market share in the region to more than 60 percent. He was instrumental in leading his team to achieve close to 40 percent of all A380 sales and more than 35 percent of A350 sales.
Fekih was also the President of Airbus Corporate Jet. He led the restructuring of all its commercial activities including aircraft, cabin interiors and services into one unit which is reflected in its market visibility.
“Habib represented the true spirit of Airbus and has served the company with distinction for three decades. Habib will be truly missed and I wish to thank him for his leadership and congratulate him for his many accomplishments,” added Enders.
Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2015, it generated revenues of €64.5 billion and employed a workforce of around 136,600.
Airbus offers the most comprehensive range of passenger airliners from 100 to more than 600 seats. Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, as well as Europe’s number one space enterprise and the world’s second largest space business. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.